#55 The Vanaprastha Ashram – Still Relevant Today?
The vanaprastha ashram has not yet received much attention within our ISKCON society, nevertheless throughout the Srimad Bhagavatam, Srila Prabhupada emphasizes the importance of this ashram. In spiritual life and culture, the elders are respected and valued as most important members of society. They embody life experience and self-realization and are cared for with affection and respect. We will discover the underlying principles of the vanaprastha ashram – the highly valuable contribution this ashram is giving to society and the necessity of cultivating the internal mood of detachment and renunciation. We will receive encouragement to meet old age in deep satisfaction. This presentation is relevant for anybody who wants to plan their life thoughtfully and receive inspiration to ultimately approach death with great hope and joy.
Devaki Devi Dasi joined the brahmacarini ashram in Sydney in 1985 and is a disciple of Niranjana Swami. During her grhastha life (1989-1999) she helped to pioneer the first organized temple in the former Soviet Union. Since 1999 she has been serving as a renounced traveling preacher, regularly visiting India, Bangladesh, Ukraine and other European countries. She has established Bhakti Sangam festivals in various countries and conducts Holy Name Retreats. While preaching in Bangladesh she developed deep insights into Vaishnava culture that have enriched her spiritual practice and inspired her preaching. In 2014 she established the Institute for Spiritual Culture.